SÃO Paulo will host the nineteenth battle of the season between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton in their tense Formula 1 world championship fight this weekend. 

Hamilton, 36, won the first of his seven world championships with McLaren at the Brazilian Grand Prix in 2008 after overtaking Toyota’s Timo Glock in the final seconds of the race.

His overtake on Glock – who was driving slowly after staying out on dry tyres despite the heavens opening – gave him the fifth-place finish he needed to beat Ferrari's Felipe Massa by a single championship point. 

Hamilton has since won six more titles with Mercedes since leaving McLaren at the end of the 2012 season.

Red Bull Racing’s Verstappen, 24, is aiming to win his first world championship in his seventh season in F1.

The Dutchman leads Hamilton by nineteen points going into this weekend’s Brazilian Grand Prix.

After this weekend, there are three more races to decide the Drivers' and Constructors' World Championships in Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates.

Back in 2009, the Brazilian Grand Prix – then the penultimate race of the season ahead of the inaugural Abu Dhabi Grand Prix – provided the greatest moment in the career in Somerset’s Jenson Button.

A fifth-place race finish in São Paulo was enough for Button, who was born in Frome and grew up in nearby Vobster, to seal the drivers’ world championship title with the newly-formed Brawn GP team, only months after he nearly lost his place in the sport.

After his incredible achievement, a euphoric Button said: "It's really amazing, especially after the last few races I've had. 

"This makes up for it. 

"It was such an awesome race, and I'm world champion, baby! 

He added: "21 years ago, I jumped in a car and I loved winning. 

"I never expected to be world champion in F1, but we've done it." 

Since 2006, Button had driven for Honda Racing, winning the first race of his career at the Hungarian Grand Prix in his first season with the Japanese constructor.

Besides their win at the Hungaroring, Honda and Button’s performances were unremarkable until the end of the 2008 season, in which the team scored only 14 points and Button ranked in 18th position in the Drivers’ Championship.

In December 2009, Honda announced they would be withdrawing from F1, blaming the world economic crisis after spending £300 million per year on their involvement in the sport.

At a press conference, Honda president Takeo Fukui said: “This difficult decision has been made in light of the quickly deteriorating operating environment facing the global auto industry and the sudden contraction of the world economies.

“Honda must protect its core business activities and secure the long term as widespread uncertainties in the economics around the globe continue to mount.”

The team was put up for sale and members of staff at Honda’s Brackley factory were told to expect redundancy letters by Christmas.

Ross Brawn, Honda’s technical director - formerly of Benetton and Ferrari - saved the team from the brink of collapse for a nominal fee of £1 in March 2009, just weeks before the new season was scheduled to start.

The new team, named Brawn GP, kept Honda’s driver line-up of Button and Rubens Barrichello and adopted Mercedes power units and a clever but controversial ‘double diffuser’ system into the chassis Honda had started developing midway through the 2008 season.

The car excelled in pre-season, lapping eight-tenths faster than their rivals at the team’s first test in Barcelona, despite Brawn and Barrichello expressing concerns about a lack of development time. 

Brawn’s striking white and yellow cars also performed brilliantly at the first race of the 2009 season in Melbourne, Australia, marking a huge achievement for a team that almost ceased to exist only months earlier.

Button qualified for the race in pole position with teammate Barrichello lining up in second to secure the team’s first front-row lockout.

The British driver won the race and, despite a collision with Ferrari’s Kimi Räikkönen, his teammate Barrichello managed to finish in second.

Button and Brawn’s stellar performances continued throughout the first third of the season.

The Frome-born racer took the chequered flag at seven of the first eight races of the campaign, although his win in Sepang, Malaysia, was worth only five points rather than the usual 10 because torrential rain prevented the race from reaching the required 75% distance for full points.

After his victory at the Turkish Grand Prix in June, Button did not win another race for the rest of the campaign as other teams – led by Red Bull and McLaren – narrowed the performance gap to Brawn.

Despite mounting pressure from other teams, Barrichello won two races at the European Grand Prix in Valencia and the Italian Grand Prix in Monza ahead of his home race in Brazil.

Barrichello’s strong second half of the season meant he was still in contention to beat Button to the championship at the end of the season, but the Brit could have  secured the title in São Paulo if he finished within four points of his teammate.

It was advantage Barrichello going into the race after the Brazilian driver secured pole position in a chaotic qualifying session held during a tropical storm.

Button started the race from 14th on the grid, having been eliminated in the second round of qualifying.

Incidents on the first lap of the race and a safety car helped Button climb to ninth place in the first half of the race before Barrichello suffered a puncture after contact with Hamilton during an attempted overtake from the McLaren driver.

Button managed to gain more places to finish in fifth, gaining four points, while Barrichello’s eighth-place finish was only enough for one point - securing Button his first and only world championship.

Reflecting on his championship win, Button said: “The evening I won, in Brazil, the team went to a bar.

“I stayed for about an hour and a half, then went home and sat in my room thinking of everything I gave up to get there.”

Somerset County Gazette: "AWESOME": The Somerset County Gazette celebrates Jenson Button's triumph"AWESOME": The Somerset County Gazette celebrates Jenson Button's triumph

The race in São Paulo was won by Red Bull’s Mark Webber.

BMW Sauber’s Robert Kubica finished in second, with Hamilton third in his McLaren after climbing from 18th on the grid.

Sebastian Vettel’s win at Abu Dhabi’s Yas Marina circuit was enough for the German driver to finish the 2009 season in second in the Drivers’ Championship, with Barrichello having to settle for third.

The Brawn team won the Constructors’ Championship by 18.5 points from Red Bull in the fairytale team’s only season.

In November 2009, Daimler AG (owner of the team's engine supplier Mercedes-Benz), in partnership with Aabar Investments, purchased a 75.1% stake in Brawn GP, which was renamed Mercedes GP for the 2010 season.

The Silver Arrows, now called Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team, has dominated the sport since a major change to the regulations in 2014, winning the Drivers’ and Constructors’ World Championships every year.

Now, Verstappen and his Red Bull team could make history by loosening Mercedes’ grip on motorsport's elite series.  

Read more: Lando Norris: Why the McLaren driver’s first F1 win is just around the corner